Posts Tagged ‘attorney’
A Mendocino County Superior Court judge has sentenced two brothers to nearly one year in county jail and three years of probation each for a marijuana grow raided in 2008, the District Attorney’s Office stated.
Certificate outlines cause of death in Klamath killing; Del Norte DA claims political attack behind motion to prevent him from prosecuting
The manner and cause of death in a March killing outside Klamath is particularly unusual and graphic, and statements to that end by Del Norte County’s district attorney are being used by the suspect’s defense in an attempt to bar him from trying
Candidates for Humboldt County District Attorney are sure to offer fireworks with four candidates running for the job held by Paul Gallegos since 2003.
The first debate will be held Thursday, April 15th from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Senior Room of the Arcata Community Center and will air live on Channel 12. The debate will be hosted by the Redwood ACLU and moderated by ACLU chairman Greg Allen.
The second debate starts at 6pm on Friday, April 16 at the Humboldt Area Foundation. Focus will be on animal cruelty cases. More info at the Humboldt Vegetarian Society.
Gallegos, according to his Facebook page, is the “best criminal prosecutor we’ve had in Humboldt County.” His three challengers think otherwise. Tune in to see who makes the case. You be the judge.
Judge: Man can seek cash for lost pot [Daily Triplicate]
Attorney: Value at ‘several hundred thousand dollars’
A Gasquet man will have the chance to receive the cash value of his
marijuana plants that were destroyed by authorities after a search
warrant was served three years ago on a Crescent City home he owned.
District Attorney Paul Gallegos will be in Garberville today, April 13, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Garberville Civic Club, 477 Maple Lane. The community is invited to come to a potluck dinner with fellow supporters and talk directly with their
Investment managers, labor unions and politicians often get the blame for exploding debt in government pension plans. But some critics point to another culprit: actuaries, the financial experts expected to make sure the plans are sound.
The case of one East Bay actuary shows the deep impact of inaccurate benefit calculations. Ira Summer and the firm he owns, Public Pension Professionals, have been accused of errors that cost local government plans in California and Florida millions.
Fresno and Kern counties were among the entities that sustained losses on Summer’s watch. In both San Joaquin Valley communities, the growing shortfall now threatens the financial health of pension plans.
Actuaries are responsible for the economic and demographic assumptions that ensure employees and employers pay enough into a plan. They estimate how much a plan will make from investments, how long retirees will live, what will happen to salaries over time.
Pension boards approve the assumptions, but board members tend to rely on the expertise of actuaries because the estimates are based on complex information.
Summer has made millions of dollars from contracting with local governments in California, some of which retained him for several years. In one year alone, he earned about $400,000 total from five California counties where his firm provided actuarial service.
In separate lawsuits, Fresno and Kern counties successfully sued Summer and his firm for professional negligence. Fresno reached a settlement, and Kern won in court. The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District also won a judgment against Summer, and shoddy work has been alleged by pension managers in San Mateo, Tulare and Imperial counties.
Some communities may have skipped legal action because Summer let his insurance lapse in 2006, leaving little financial recourse for those who win suits.
Summer said he couldn’t comment for this story because he’s involved in a dispute with insurers.
Records show, however, that Summer has acknowledged mistakes in plans he handled. In 2006, when Fresno County’s retirement board had his work audited, Summer promised to correct errors, according to board minutes. That same year, Summer told a retirement board in Palm Bay, Fla., that his firm had erred in some calculations, according to that board’s minutes.
When one pension plan replaced Summer, the new actuary found that an error by Summer had had a significant financial impact, according to a report by the Conference of Consulting Actuaries. The report doesn’t identify which plan, and the conference would not elaborate.
Summer declined to help the actuary get to the bottom of the mistake and failed to cooperate in the conference’s investigation of his conduct, according to the conference, which took the rare step of publicly reprimanding Summer.
Fresno County’s pension shortfall has grown fourfold in the last five years, to almost $800 million last year – one of the biggest increases among the state’s largest local government plans.
Investment losses account for about one-third of that increased shortfall, records show. More debt was created by actuarial changes to the plan, including changes resulting from Summer’s work.
In 2006, four years after he was hired, Fresno County requested an independent audit of Summer’s work. Although aware of problems with Summer elsewhere, county retirement administrator Roberto Peña said the audit was done simply because it is good practice to do so.
The audit by actuaries in the San Francisco office of the Segal Co. turned up a number of problems. First, following Summer’s advice, the county required employees to pay for cost-of-living increases in the plan, breaking the previous practice of splitting that cost with employers, and differing from other plans across the state, auditors found.
The Fresno County Employees’ Retirement Association opted to reimburse the employees, further depleting the fund.
The audit also turned up problems with how Summer calculated inflation for some pensioners.
While those mistakes might not appear serious, they carried high costs.
“All of the changes that affect plan cost, the impact is multiplied for plans that have relatively larger benefits,” said Paul Angelo, the Segal actuary who audited Summer and later replaced him as Fresno’s actuary.
Fresno County has one of the most generous plans in the state. The county had to set up a supplemental pension because then-Gov. Gray Davis vetoed the higher benefit approved by county leaders in 2000.
As a result of corrections made after the audit, the county’s pension shortfall grew by almost $160 million, records show.
In its lawsuit, Fresno County’s retirement association accused Summer and his firm of causing $99 million in damages to the plan. The association’s attorney claimed Summer was running a “sham company” out of his home, and said the company had “a long and exotic history of failing to ensure that they have the assets or insurance necessary to satisfy the many claims against it.”
Because of Summer’s insurance problems, the retirement association agreed to settle the suit for $250,000 last year, Peña said.
In retrospect, he said, the association erred by not checking Summer’s insurance. It routinely makes those checks now.
In a brief conversation with The Bee, Summer said he continues to work as an actuary in California but declined to say where.
There were a number of Democrats at the Republican Central Committee’s Annual Dinner on April 10th, honoring Muriel Dinsmore. Some of them clearly came in support of the Republican of the Year, while others seemed to be more interested in promoting themselves.
Current Eureka Mayor, Virginia Bass, presented a proclamation to Muriel and praised her as a classy and gracious lady. The other supervisorial candidate, Jeff Leonard, and his dad, were also present, though noticeably uninterested in Virginia’s presentation of the City of Eureka proclamation.
Current Supervisor Jimmy Smith came with a proclamation for Muriel and was warm and gracious to all.
Kathleen Bryson, one of the four Democratic candidates for District Attorney, was also in attendance. She, like both the Leonards, spent most of the evening working the room for money and votes.
The only notable Republican candidate was some earnest young guy, whose name I can’t remember, challenging Congressman Mike Thompson.
Rob Arkley gave the keynote speech. It was moderate in tone and he actually praised Nancy Pelosi for her political skill. Though he doesn’t support the health insurance reform bills, he acknowledged her success in getting them passed. Give him credit for being willing to recognize talent.
A court ruling dismissing Tyson from a major harassment lawsuit against him and the city has been appealed by attorneys for former EPD dispatcher Tawnie Hansen. The appeal was filed Thursday.
Humboldt County Superior Court judge John Feeney dismissed Tyson from personal liability in the case in January, but cleared the way for Hansen’s case to proceed against the city.
The lawsuit is based on an anonymous blog allegedly run from inside the Eureka Police Dept. that peddled salacious gossip about an alleged affair between Hansen and Police Chief Garr Nielsen. Both have denied the rumors.
Hansen alleges that Tyson failed to prevent the workplace harassment by pursuing an over-broad “global investigation” that effectively buried her complaints, and that Tyson aided and abetted the harassment. She is seeking $1.4 million in damages.
An earlier lawsuit was settled when another former dispatcher, DeeDee Wilson, agreed to pay Hansen $10,000 following allegations of libel and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
District Attorney candidate Paul Hagen invited citizens to the opening of his campaign headquarters on Saturday, April 3 during Arts! Alive. Hagen met with voters to answer questions and share his vision for the DA’s office.
The Redding Searchlight reports that Republican gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman spent the day in Redding before locals spotted her in the Northern Humboldt party spot. Whitman was reportedly flanked by fellow Republican Johanna Rodoni, candidate for County Assessor, and Democrats Virginia Bass and Allison Jackson, each of whom are running for two of the highest offices in the land — Humboldt County Supervisor and District Attorney respectively.
Former County Administrator — and close advisor to Bass — Loretta Nickolaus apparently tagged along.
Anyone get photos?
Whitman is supported by local Republican hot head Rob Arkley, who donated $25,000 to her campaign last year.